Militants are roping in surrendered terrorists and “overground workers” of terror outfits in a desperate effort to revive terrorism in the Jammu region, a top police official said on Monday. S D Singh Jamwal, the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Jammu, said that the militants’ attempts to revive terrorism continue to be foiled by alert security forces.
Police has scuttled two attempts to revive militancy in the region this year by busting two terror modules and arresting nine militants in the Doda and the Ramban districts of the region, he said. “Jammu region is virtually a militancy-free zone, but there are continuous attempts by anti-national elements to revive militancy and they are in touch with surrendered militants and sympathisers,” Jamwal told PTI.
“This time the situation in Jammu region is under control but they are making attempts by roping in surrendered militants, overground workers, and their attempt is to vitiate the peaceful atmosphere,” the IGP said. He said the recent militant attack in Banihal and the earlier incident in Doda were part of the nefarious designs of the militants but police had cracked both the cases within 72 hours by arresting nine culprits and seizing the weapons, including snatched service rifles.
In May, a special police officer was killed and another injured when terrorists attacked their post in Tantra in Doda district, he said. An SSB jawan was killed and another injured when their patrol party was attacked in Banihal area of Ramban district last month. The ultras fled from the scene with the service rifles of the slain and injured SSB jawans, Jamwal said.
Five terrorists were arrested in connection with the Doda attack. Three newly recruited Banihal youth and another person from south Kashmir, who provided a pistol to them, were arrested in connection with the attack in Banihal, he said. Jamwal said the security forces were watching the minutest movement of the suspects to frustrate them.
“We have full control over the situation and we are monitoring and watching the minutest movement of the suspects. Their attempts are on but we have not allowed them to succeed in their nefarious designs,” the Jammu region police chief said. He said it was the counter-insurgency plan that did not allow the terrorists to settle down and as a result both the modules set up in Banihal and Doda were busted within the shortest possible time.
Jamwal said only three militants were active in Kishtwar district and “efforts are on to neutralise them”. “Kishtwar belt is very vast and connected to south Kashmir. We have three listed militants in our records operating in Kishtwar, one of them, Jehangir, is the oldest surviving militant. There are no other militant active in the region,” the IGP said.
He said there were chances, that when the pressure on militants in south Kashmir builds up, they might try to shift their base to this side of Pir Panjal. “But we are alive to the situation and have taken necessary precautionary measures to ensure they do not succeed,” he said.
Jamwal said there was synergy among various security agencies working on the ground to maintain law and order and peace in the region. “Army, police and other security forces are working closely along with intelligence network on the ground. Though there is no major threat but the chances of militants spreading their tentacles remains,” he said.
Jamwal said since nomads move along the high altitude areas, all police posts along their routes have been directed to maintain tight vigil to ensure that terrorists do not mingle with them and come to this side. The officer said despite frequent ceasefire violations along the International Border (IB) and Line of Control (LoC) there was no breach of the fence along the borders.
“In some cases, the cross-border firing was aimed at giving cover fire to the infiltrating militants but no such activity was witnessed and there was no breach of the fence. Recently a tunnel along the IB was unearthed, scuttling the attempt to push militants into this side,” he said. Jamwal said multi-tier security arrangements were in place along the LoC in Rajouri and Poonch districts to foil infiltration of militants from across the border.
“There was no report of any militant activity reported from the twin districts. That means there was no breach of the border fencing and the alertness of the Army despite frequent cross-border firing had ensured zero per cent infiltration (of militants),” he said.